How to make an impact even if you can't go out and protest
While many people are protesting in the name of George Floyd and all Black individuals across the world, many others are not able to be on the frontlines, whether because of fears of coronavirus or a lack of flexibility in their schedules. However, just because you might be unable to protest doesn’t mean you can’t make an impact—it just might come from the comfort of your home, instead.
It’s essential that we all strive to make a change right now, even if we can’t protest. As noted by certified rehabilitation counselor and licensed professional counselor intern Devyn Walker, this is not just Black Americans’ fight, it’s everyone’s fight. “We’ve been doing this alone for generations and we need everyone involved in order to see a change—at home or on the front lines,” Walker tells HelloGiggles.
Below, Walker explores all the different ways you can still fight the fight, no matter where you are.
HG: Many people are donating right now—why should we make financial contributions?
Devyn Walker: If you look at the type of society we live in, it’s proven that money talks. If you look at how much money police departments receive, they normally receive the most money just to murder and harm Black people. So in order to see the change, we not only need to protest, but we also need to donate to different causes to help the activists do what’s needed to be done.
Organizations to donate to help activists and protestors:
Solutions Not Punishment Co. – SNPC’s goal is to end mass “genocide, incarceration, and criminalization of Black trans women, trans/queer people, and the larger Black community.” The organization uses educational programs and a fund (called taking care of our own fund) that provides financial support to trans people experiencing personal emergencies.
Pimento Relief Fund – The organization helps support black businesses that have been damaged by white supremacists during protests.
Reclaim the Block – Reclaim the Block works with city council members in Minneapolis to move money from the police department to other areas of the community to aid health and safety.
NAACP Legal Defense Fund – This organization fights for racial justice in America.
What are other ways we can help besides protesting?
DW: You can sign petitions, send emails, make phone calls, and use your talents to raise money. For example, I’m personally not a protester; I prefer to be behind the scenes. So the other day, I held a virtual meditation where I received 1000 dollars in donations. These methods are not cop-outs because they’re still very impactful and we’re being heard regardless. The other day, so many people sent emails to Minneapolis PD that they had to close down the emails. That shows that they hear us.
Where to sign petitions, emails, or phone calls:
#DefundThePolice – Sign the petition to remove the national defunding used for police departments.
Justice for George Floyd – Sign to make clear you believe the police officers involved in George Floyd’s death should be put behind bars.
Stand With Bre – Sign so that the people who shot Breonna Taylor are arrested and charged.
The Minneapolis Police Department: firstname.lastname@example.org
NYC Council Members: A list of emails and transcripts from Twitter user Debbie Fong.
Info on how to contact your representatives: Joincampaignzero.org
Activist accounts to follow:
@Rachel.cargle – Rachel Cargle is a public academic, writer, and lecturer who uses her academic work to educate students on the “intersection of race and womanhood.”
@blackandembodied – Alishia McCullough is a licensed mental health therapist who promotes racial healing through therapy and educational practices.
@laylafsaad – The author of Me And White Supremacy, Fsaad discusses racial injustice and white privilege. She’s also the host of Good Ancestor Podcast, which highlights “change-makers & culture-shapers who are exploring what it means to be a #goodancestor.”
How can we help protestors from home?
DW: Donate to protestor bailout funds. Also, email these big corporations and ask how they are helping during these times. Hold them accountable! Educate your followers and loved ones on and off social media.
Bailout funds to donate to:
The Bail Project – The national foundation helps “prevent incarceration and combat racial and economic disparities in the bail system.” Plus, when you donate, the money is recycled back into the fund to help others in need. See the full directory here: National Bail Fund Network.
The LGBTQ Freedom Fund – The organization posts bail for low-income LGBTQ individuals who have been arrested or are in immigration detention.
The Black National Bail Out – The Black National Bail Out is a “Black-led and Black-centered collective of abolitionist organizers, lawyers, and activists building a community-based movement.” The organization’s goal is to support Black people who have arrested and to end “systems of pretrial detention and ultimately mass incarceration.”
How can we make an impact from home that’s not just for now, but for years to come?
DW: People can continue to make an impact by staying informed with what’s going on around them. Donate to schools and organizations in the lower economic neighborhoods. Continue to speak out about injustices. Most importantly, educate yourself. In school, they left out a lot of important events when it comes to black history. Learn about those events and educate other people around you.
Where to donate to schools:
Equal Opportunity Schools – The organization works with high school teachers to give students about educational opportunities and to ensure that they’re taking challenging classes.
The Education Trust – This is a national nonprofit that strives to transform and better the school system by analyzing local, state, and national data to help provide the necessary actions to close the gaps.
Thurgood Marshall College Fund – The Thurgood Marshall College Fund is “the nation’s largest organization exclusively representing the Black College Community.” TMCF has helped students from K-12 and beyond by providing scholarships, working on research initiatives, and creating innovative programs.